The Ohio State game is now only history.
For the Miami Hurricanes, they spent their bye week trying to get that bitter Ohio State flavor out their mouth and focused on moving forward through the season.
The team’s goal was to get a clear mind heading into their game against Pittsburgh Thursday night. Having a few days off, going back to the drawing board, and annual the Toilet Bowl game have helped the Canes refocus.
The Hurricanes don’t want still dwell on their 36-24 loss to the Buckeyes.
“We cannot let Ohio State beat us twice,” junior wide receiver LaRon Byrd said. “After coming off a loss, having a whole week-and-a-half off, that taste is still in your mouth. So you still kind of feel like ‘Dang, we should have won that game.’ But you have to put that in the past, it makes you work a little harder.”
Some players see the loss against Ohio State as a learning experience.
“We can’t forget,” redshirt sophomore linebacker Jordan Futch said. “We never want to forget. We want to understand that was a loss, and we learned from it. Like coach Shannon said, win or lose we’re going to learn from it. That’s what we did. So that was a learning experience, and now we’re on the road to victory.”
Some believe it might have woke up a sleeping giant within them.
“That was a big wakeup call,” sophomore safety Ray-Ray Armstrong said. “Everybody is working much harder right now.”
The off week focused around head coach Randy Shannon as he ripped into his team after the loss. Players who missed tackles, missed blocks, and felt his tirade. Publicly, Shannon has hardly criticized a player for missing assignments but in private Shannon has never been shy on words.
“I’ve never been a guy that just goes off,” said Shannon, commenting on post game Ohio State rant. “But they needed it at that time because I was frustrated. We’re a good football team. And we could have done something that hasn’t been done here in a long time.”
This wasn’t the first time Shannon has come down on his team in private settings.
After the Miami’s 40-37 overtime loss against Clemson last season, Shannon threatened to have his team run the entire Sun Life Stadium following the game.
Still, Shannon has always had the respect from his players and they understand it’s his job.
“You don’t know what you going to get out of him,” Byrd said. “Sometimes he might be laid back with a smirk on his face. Next time he might be jumping down your throat. But at the same time you got to love him. It was just him being a coach. His job is to instill plays and put trust in his players.”
Sophomore cornerback Brandon McGee said after the game Shannon was the most fired up he has ever seen. McGee feels the whole team has been motivated by Shannon rant and will play even harder throughout the season.
“It definitely lit a fire,” McGee said. “We came in and just realized what we did wrong. We definitely have to adjust our mistakes and play better this week against Pitt.”
Lelan LeDoux may be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org.